The Reliance GP Blog

Ten tips to help manage high blood pressure
Rod Beckwith November 4, 2015

If you’ve recently been diagnosed with high blood pressure; although it might seem quite daunting,

there are ways of controlling it that mainly involve a lifestyle adjustment.

What is a high BP? High blood pressure is present when a systolic pressure (of 140 or above) or a

diastolic pressure (of 90 or above) is diagnosed by your doctor. This in turns increases your risk of

stroke, heart attack, kidney failure and impotence. Medication may be prescribed by your doctor

and there are also additional lifestyle changes that you can make to help bring those numbers down

to a healthy level.

Here are 10 tips to help successfully control your blood pressure…

1. Exercise regularly

The best thing you can do for a soaring blood pressure is to get physical Regular physical activity, at

least 30 minutes most days of the week — can lower your blood pressure

2. Eating Healthy

Eating a balanced diet that focuses on fresh fruits and veggies, complex carbohydrates like whole

grains, lean protein, and low-fat dairy while minimising refined sugar, excess salt, and saturated fat

and cholesterol will help keep blood pressure levels in check.

3. Quit smoking

If you smoke, you’re already doing your part to increase those blood pressure levels by a dangerous

10 mm Hg or greater following every cigarette.  And if you smoke frequently throughout the

day—that means you’re constantly accelerating your levels to dangerous heights.

4. Reduce salt

Minimising the sodium in your diet will instantly lower your blood pressure. So start reading food

labels and replacing processed for whole foods where you can

5. Lose weight

Blood pressure raises with weight, which means you can reduce your numbers by simply losing a few

excess kgs—particularly around your middle, near your heart.

6. Stress less

Taking a breather from stressful work, family, social obligations, or financial obligations will also help

lower blood pressure. And if you can’t eliminate stress completely, learn to cope with de-stressing

methods—like exercise, massage, meditation, or yoga.

8. Drinking in moderation

Studies show that drinking alcohol, red wine in particular, in small amounts, can actually help lower

blood pressure. However, adverse effects occur if you drink in excess—which is why it’s important

for women to keep alcohol intake to 1 drink per day and men to stick to a maximum of 2 drinks a day

9. Take your medication correctly

If you have been prescribed medication it is important to follow instructions of usage to ensure

consistent blood pressure control. Taking medication only when you don’t feel right results in

under treatment.

10. Visit your GP

It’s important to see your GP regularly so that they can monitor you and keep you and your blood

pressure on track. Some blood pressure medications require occasional blood tests to make sure

side-effects are not occurring. Your GP will also be interested in home-monitoring records you may

be keeping- but as well they need to compare that to traditional blood-pressure measurements.

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